Singapore Offended By Genting-Stanley Macau Deals?

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Jan 25 2007
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Will there be a full blessing from the Government of Singapore on the tie-up between Genting and Stanley Ho on the reported cross-stake-selling in order for both parties to have two doors wide-open in Singapore and Macau’s lucrative casino industry? According to Straits Times, apparently the talk between the two gambling tycoon had “raised a red flag with the authorities”.

Singapore’s Home Affairs Ministry, responding to questions from the newspaper, said that suitability checks would be conducted as and when necessary. Genting Bhd said on Tuesday it would sell a small stake in its $3.4 billion Singapore casino project to Ho and would in turn buy a controlling interest in a new gaming project that Ho plans in Macau.

If the flag had indeed be raised, it would spark a problem to the just-won Resorts World at Sentosa. I think the government of Singapore might get offended because it was keep in the dark of the secret alliance between Genting Group (KLSE: GENTING, stock-code 3182) and Stanley Ho. Traditionally, Singapore prefers to be updated on any changes to projects or issues concerning its’ benefits and welfare. Perhaps, the problem can be solved by a friendly pat on the back and a cup of Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX, stock) Latte by Lim Kok Thay.

When Genting beat two consortiums – including Melco International Development (HKG: 0200) which is controlled by Ho’s son Lawrence, was there anything being proposed by Melco initially which the Singapore Government didn’t like and is now afraid might be re-proposed with the entry of Stanley’s equity?

It would be a waste if all the hard-work goes into the drain because of a minor misunderstanding. Worst case – the deal between Genting and Stanley is OFF.

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